Volleyball Lover Episode 1




Umm...pandas are not scary...& they don't beat people up...

Hi everyone! I’m ahmee and I will be the recapper for Volleyball Lover (我的排隊情人). I decided to recap this because I believe this is the first drama about a sport other than the overused basketball or baseball. And I love volleyball so that just made me want to watch it more. Most people probably haven’t heard of this drama (unless you are up to date on every single drama that comes out or you like the actors/actresses in a drama) because it airs on Fridays instead of Sundays, which is when all the mainstream dramas are shown and where we get the ratings battle every Sunday. So even though this drama just ended this Friday, I still want to recap it because I found that I liked this drama more than all the Sunday dramas that were airing at the time. I hope that my recap will help introduce people to a less mainstream drama and make them want to watch it! :D And for those of you who do watch this, can I get a ♥ and a shout out saying why you love this drama? :D Now on to the recap!

THE STORY:

Bai Qian Rui (Godfrey Gao) and Xin Hai Jing (Annie Chen) grew up together so they never saw each other as more than just close friends who would help each other out when needed. So when Hai Xing and her dad’s volleyball team is in danger of being cut, she asks Qian Rui to join the team in order to save it. However, Qian Rui tries everything to get out of joining because he isn’t interested in playing volleyball or any other sports for that matter. Instead he is busying trying to get Jia Kai Lin (Cindy Song) to date him. But it turns out that joining the team is the key to get Kai Lin’s attention as well as change their long-time friendship into something more.

CHARACTERS:

Xin Hai Jing (Annie Chen of Prince + Princess 2 and Happy & Love Forever) is the captain of Di Bei bank’s female volleyball team. Her dream is to be a professional volleyball player so she will not let anything stop her from playing.




So when the team is in danger of being cut, she tries to enlist her childhood friend, Bai Qian Rui (Godfrey Gao of Momo Love) to join. Qian Rui is the smart, handsome, princely type of guy who can make all the girls swoon just by smiling. In fact, he is generally referred to as Prince Qian Rui.





So he should have no problem in getting any girl he wants. But as luck would have it, the school beauty he is interested in, Jia Kai Lin (Cindy Song), has no interest in him at all. Kai Lin only likes sporty men specifically those who play volleyball, such as Liu Qing Han (Lan Jun Tian of Momo Love) who is Hai Jing’s boyfriend as well as the captain of Di Bei bank’s male volleyball team. He is loyal to Hai Jing and Di Bei’s volleyball team, but because of family debt problems, he is forced to choose between playing for Di Bei’s volleyball team or for Dong Huang’s volleyball team.


Dong Huang’s volleyball team is financed by Kai Lin’s father, Jia Tian Hao (he seriously looks like Beethoven or any of the other classical music composers with that hair). And this might also be one of the reasons that Kai Lin likes volleyball playing men. He is rivals with Hai Jing’s father, Xin Ji AKA Xin Jiao Lian, which means Coach Xin (Na Wei Xun – his characters are always so diverse. i.e. Fated To Love You and Black & White) who is the coach for Di Bei bank’s male and female volleyball team. Xin Jiao Lian is the mastermind behind getting Qian Rui to join the team.

CHAPTER 1 RECAP:

The episode opens with a look at a messy bedroom with clothes thrown everywhere, which would make anyone think that a bed scene has taken place. However, several DVD cases are also shown and they don’t look like cute romantic movies at all. Then we see 2 bodies sleeping on a bed with a half naked Bai Qian Rui scratching his butt. HAHA.


He half wakes up when Xin Hai Jing’s injured foot hits him on the head. We find out that Qian Rui has once again ended up sleeping over at Hai Jing’s place because they were watching horror movies, which he loves to watch, but is scared to watch them alone. Therefore he always needs Hai Jing to watch with him and then he sleeps over because he is scared to sleep alone. HAHA. So I guess our male lead isn’t going to be the manly type. And according to Hai Jing, a retard too, because he forgot he had a competition today until his mom called to remind him.


Here, we get a short voiceover by Qian Rui introducing Hai Jing to us (with unflattering shots of her like the ones above). They are neighbors as well as childhood friends since kindergarten. He says that she is probably the only girl besides his mom who he can sleep next to without her falling madly in love with him. And this is because they have a Xiong Di (brother) relationship. In his eyes, Hai Jing isn’t even a girl.



Qian Rui heads to his competition looking like a prince complete with a red carpet leading from his house to the car (What kind of competition is he even going to?), while Hai Jing heads to hers. They have a bet where whoever loses their own competition has to wear a panda suit and dance at the graduation party.

Hai Jing arrives on campus ready to win, but promptly gets kidnapped. She gets herself out by calling the SWAT team. She later finds out that it was her own volleyball team who tried to lock her up so she won’t be able to play because her leg is injured. She still plays though because she does not want to lose.


Meanwhile, Qian Rui is at…a Sudoku competition (hahaha I have never heard of a Sudoku competition, but I guess anything is possible). They try to make it look like a super serious competition with the suspenseful music and time limit, but it just ended up making me laugh. HA.

His win causes Hai Jing to miss a volley and therefore lose the game because her teammate who was streaming the competition on the sidelines suddenly shouted out that he won.


We now meet Liu Qing Han, Hai Jing’s boyfriend, who comforts her about the loss. Meanwhile, we see that Qian Rui is getting mobbed by girls who are confessing to him. Oh the life of a prince. How troublesome.


We cut to Hai Jing wearing a panda suit while Qian Rui is laughing at her. Hai Jing isn’t happy because the only reason they lost is because of him winning. Qian Rui takes it to mean that they lost because of his suaveness, which accompanied by a flick of his fingers across his eyebrow. haha Narcissistic much? So they end up wrestling each other…just like brothers would do.


They stop wrestling when some hikers walk by and he is really polite to them. Hai Jing calls him a hypocrite and faker. Why can’t he maintain just a bit of his princely image when around her? Well, because he doesn’t want to be a prince for a “guy.” How dare he! So she steps on his super clean white shoes and walks away. HAHA. He is so narcissistic that all he does is yell after her in a girly voice and then sit down to clean them.


Now we see Hai Jing’s father, Coach Xin, meeting with the principal and the executive of Di Bei bank. He finds out that they want to disband the volleyball team because they keep losing. However, if the team wins at the Enterprise League competition in three months, then the team won’t be disbanded.

He tells Hai Jing and Qing Han about this news, but Hai Jing is not fazed. She has faith that if they work hard they will be able to win. Plus they have Qing Han, an ace spiker! (But currently, he sure doesn’t look like one with that panda suit on. He wants to do the dance with Hai Jing at graduation. Haha)

But having only Qing Han isn’t enough, so they need to find another ace spiker. Or…they might need to find two more ace spikers because Qing Han gets a call from Dong Huang inviting him to join Dong Huang’s volleyball team. They offer him a starting salary of 70,000 NT (~$2270 US) too. He is tempted because all the money he makes delivering milk is given to his mom and his two younger brothers while his stepfather just gambles away the money. He doesn’t want to betray Hai Jing and Di Bei volleyball team though so he’s stuck in making a decision. Poor guy.


And now time for another scene showing us Qian Rui’s wimpyness. He passes by some kids doing pull ups and he decides to try it too except he can’t pull himself up AT ALL. HAHA. Hai Jing catches him trying to do them and is surprised because: “Didn’t you say you don’t exercise?” Well, it was just “moving around” not “exercising.” He doesn’t do stuff that makes him sweat.

But Hai Jing remembers that he used to do high jumping in elementary school (even breaking the national record). And then suddenly he quit, but we don’t know why.

She asks him if he wants to join the volleyball team, but he declines and says volleyball is strange and the people who play it are stupid. *gasp* He just insulted her favorite sport! Let the wrestling ensue!


When they’re done, they sit down to just talk. Qian Rui’s post-graduation plan is to go to England to get an MBA (Masters in Business Administration; not NBA like Hai Jing thought).

Then the talk switches to dating. Qian Rui tells Hai Jing to hurry and marry Qing Han because there are not that many guys who see her as a girl. How mean. Hai Jing retaliates with: “You can’t even find a girlfriend. It’s probably because of your severe “Prince illness” that no girl wants to be with you. Or…are you gay?” And then runs around yelling: “Bai Qian Rui is GAY!” HAHA I LOVE Hai Jing’s insults.

To stop her from telling the whole world, he tells her that he is trying to chase the school beauty queen, Jia Kai Lin who is in the foreign language department. We cut to her reciting some poem in English. (Her English sucks though and I personally don’t find her to be a “beauty queen.”) Qian Rui’s two sidekicks/minions interrupt her recitation in order to invite her to have afternoon tea with Qian Rui.


She goes and we see Qian Rui trying to charm her by complimenting her in English that is way better than her English. She straight out asks him (in bad English): “Are you in love with me?” He says yes and asks her to be his girlfriend. She rejects him because: 1) she didn’t like his way of getting her to meet him, 2) She likes someone who is special, not a prince that EVERYONE likes, 3) his two minions’ rap sucked. (Uhh…that’s a valid reason?)


So he is now in the park being sad over the rejection. Meanwhile, the kids playing Frisbee nearby gets their Frisbee stuck in a tree. He does a supernatural high jump to get it back (The kids are scared instead of thankful. HAHA). But Coach Xin happens to see his jump and is amazed. He would be the perfect ace spiker! He tries to persuade him, but Qian Rui says he already rejected when Hai Jing asked him. So Coach Xin tells Hai Jing to try to persuade him some more since he would help a long-time friend right?


Hai Jing knows it’s not possible so ignores her father’s request and goes to look for Qing Han. She finds him talking to Kai Lin who introduces herself as the one who is trying to get him to come play for Dong Huang because Dong Huang is her dad, Jia Tian Hao’s, volleyball team. He is impressed by the name because Jia Tian Hao is his idol in the volleyball world. So he requests for a meeting with her dad.

Well, Hai Jing hears all of that and she is not happy. They argue about each other being selfish. And they break up because he is basically betraying her and her dad by joining their rival volleyball team. Aww. He tells her that if he joins Dong Huang he will be able to support his family as well as her when Di Bei's team gets disbanded. Hai Jing doesn't care if he can support her or not though; She even says she will help him support his family! So she is mad that he's using money as an excuse to go play for Dong Huang and that he's already giving up when he hasn't even tried tried yet. Now, what he should have told her is that he really does need money and if he didn't need the money, he would definitely stay at Di Bei. Of course he doesn’t say all this because: 1) it will hurt his pride as a man and 2) this is a drama. Misunderstandings are needed in order for them to have a drama to act out and a drama for us to watch.


At night, Hai Jing is in her room being sad over her break up with Qing Han. But she doesn’t have time to mourn over this because tonight is Qian Rui’s graduation party and she has to go and dance in a panda suit. At first, it seems like she isn’t going to show up, but in the end she does. As the dance music stops, she just stands there crying inside her panda suit because she’s remembering how Qing Han had promised to dance with her in panda suit before so she wouldn’t feel so embarrassed. So sad.

Qian Rui picks up on her sadness and chooses to dance with her. Later, they have a talk outside where they both find out what is making each other so sad. I am slightly disappointed with Qian Rui here because he tells Qing Hai to take back her tears if her reason for crying isn’t as bad as his failed confession to Jia Kai Lin. What kind of brother/friend is that? We know you’re sad too, but that’s not something you’d say to a friend. You’re supposed to be COMFORTING your friend…especially a CLOSE friend.


He does end up comforting her, but I am still disappointed. But then again, this is needed to show us how he changes from being only worried about himself to how he starts to care about others around him later on in the drama.

So they decide to drink their depression away at Hai Jing’s house. They are cute and funny drunks. Even in his drunken state, he is still cleaning his super clean white shoes. HAHA.


The drinking party ends with them going to sleep on her bed. But they can’t sleep because they both feel like it’s super hot. So time to take off their clothes! Qian Rui is having trouble taking his shirt off so Hai Jing helps him. And this is when Coach Xin comes home and sees this scene unfolding before his eyes.

He freaks out at first, but then realizes that they sleep together all the time and nothing bad has ever happened. While he is reasoning this out, he has a lightbulb moment. It seems that he has figured out a way to make Qian Rui join the team. And that is by…taking off Qian Rui’s pants!

COMMENTS:

I believe I already commented about most of the stuff I wanted to in the recap itself.

However, I do want to say that I love this drama and it’s not just because I love volleyball. The characters are just so fun and fit for each actor/actress (well I still don’t like Kai Lin that much nor her father). I love the chemistry between Hai Jing and Qian Rui. I have watched parts of Momo Love so I have seen Godfrey Gao and Lan Jun Tian’s acting. They were believable as super protective and goofy brothers, but it wasn’t super good acting. So I was kind of hesitant about Godfrey in a lead role. But he’s pretty good in here. He fits his character. Haha Oh and I definitely like Na Wei Xin. While his role as Coach Xin isn’t that special, he is pretty good at getting into the characters he plays. He was able to turn from sissy Anson from Fated To Love You to a triad boss in Black & White.

And the romantic in me makes me a sucker for the stories where childhood friends end up together. But I guess we are all romantics of some sort because isn’t this why we love to watch dramas? :D



 
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